HILLER in Hamburg, in early 1980, was a
co-founder of Palais Schaumburg.
Alongside the other rising stars of the
then healthy Neue Deutsche Welle, Palais
Schaumburg (their manifesto read 'Method:
Improvisation over a limited range of
notes within a defined framework.
Keynote: Minimalism') pursued a line of
Dada-tinged pop explosions.
released a couple of ear raising singles
on Zick Zack, played ravishing live shows
and then signed to German Phonogram. The
release of their debut lp, produced by
the enraptured David Cunningham,
coincided with Holger leaving and,
apparently, becoming a recluse.
Palais Schaumburg went on
to make the distinguished, neglected and
expensive (recorded in Zurich, mixed in
New York, produced by Coati Mundi)
'Lupa'. Holger still lurked mysteriously
out of public view as the UK eventually
spluttered into an awareness of German
affairs. Slowly the bods here began limbo
jigging to the screech and clang of
Einsturzende Neubauten while the dark
glitter of Xmal found adoration in a cult
home from home.
And now Holger, more by
good fortune than consciously opportune
timing, reappears with a lp called, 'A
Bunch of Foulness In The Pit.' Cherry Red
(an employee only had to be smacked in
the face twice before admitting that
Holger's record was in a "different
league" from that stable's other
output) scooped the thing from
Dusseldorf's Ata Tak as, like most German
indies, they continue to slide into
'Holger Hiller' is almost
the second Palais Schaumburg lp or
what it might have been if that group had
followed (should I say trailblazed) a
path of adventure less obsessively sugar
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